Captivating stories of Atlanta’s involvement in World War II unfold across a series of five large display cases at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport T Concourse. The displays, prepared by the Commemorative Air Force (CAF), the CAF Dixie Wing and the Airport Art Program, include photos and artifacts that highlight the Eighth Air Force, the Tuskegee Airmen, hometown heroes, homefront construction and homefront life. Photo by John Willhoff
The year-long exhibit tells the story of WWII through people, events, and war efforts, specifically those contributions from the state of Georgia, by utilizing histories of local heroes, home front efforts, Dixie Wing aircraft, and amazing artifacts. The artifacts, arranged in five 30-foot display cases, are on loan from the CAF Collection, Dixie Wing Collection, Powell Family, Alan B. Taylor Collection, Ken Tilley and Paul Crawford.
Visitors will be able to see unique artifacts such as WWII ace Robert “Punchy” Powell’s original P-51 Mustang Nose Art; Original WASP uniforms; Tuskegee Airmen diaries, jackets and pilot uniform; a Norden Bomb sight, and original Coca-Cola bottles used at Guadalcanal.
“The CAF WWII exhibit is an impressive display in terms of artifacts, information and presentation, and also is a great collaboration between CAF headquarters in Texas and the Atlanta Dixie Wing, based in Peachtree City,” said Dixie Wing Leader Jay Bess. “This partnership has created a museum-quality exhibit that has already captured the attention and imagination of the flying public, air crews and airport personnel. Over the coming year, the CAF exhibit will be seen by more than one million people.”
“It was a privilege to install such a large exhibition at the Atlanta Airport, where thousands of people will enjoy it every week,” said CAF Curator Keegan Chetwynd. “The exhibit is an exciting way to give travelers a look back at Georgia during World War II, connecting people to the sacrifices made by America’s Greatest Generation in service of freedom. The Homefront exhibit gave us the opportunity to showcase a side of our collection that is rarely seen, including a world- class selection of children’s toys from the war years.”
“This exhibit provides an incredible look into the life of the World War II aviators and aircraft that led America to victory,” said David Vogt, Art Program Manager at the airport. “The amazing artifacts will attract passengers to the exhibit and the rich graphic panels will bring to life this most important chapter of American history.”
“Our partnership with the Commemorative Air Force has resulted in a gem of an exhibit that will educate and engage passengers of all ages and backgrounds,” said Benjamin Austin, airport Art Program Manager. “The Airport Art Program takes pride in offering the very best exhibits and we are pleased to offer this museum-quality experience to the traveling public.”